Get ready to run


The 2015 Shamrock Run is right around the corner. To be a “Super-Team”, a minimum of 75 members need to enter.  The Run will donate $5 to the Winterhaven Foundation for every participant once they reach Super Team status.

This year’s Shamrock Run has added a half-marathon distance and there are more options to choose from: 5k Shamrock Stride open to walkers only; 5k Shamrock run; 8k Shamrock race; 15k Shamrock challenge (it is hilly) and, for the kids, a 1k leprechaun lap.

There’s something for everybody and every fitness level.  If you don’t feel like you’re ready, there’s time to start your training to be ready by race day, March 15, 2015.  They  need to get to the 75 member Super-Team by January 31, 2015.

If you want to participate and help raise money for a good cause,  register online for Winterhaven Super Team 8705 at  For questions, email:


Zenger Farm Winter Camps


Over winter break, 2nd — 6th graders can discover the quiet beauty of the Zenger farm fields and create culinary treats in the warm farmhouse kitchen.

Just in time for the holidays, winter campers will create farm- inspired gifts and master seasonal favorites such as pie, cheese and sausage.

Parents can enroll students in one or up to all six camps. Scholarships, extended care, and multiple day and sibling discounts are available.

Monday December 22: Crafting Wintery Gifts from the Farm. Twist and soak tie dye with plant-based dyes, bake spicy gingerbread cookies and roll beeswax candles while they enjoy warm winter snacks from the farmhouse kitchen.

Tuesday December 23: In the Kitchen with Pine State Biscuits. Spend the day in the Zenger farmhouse kitchen scratch-baking with guest chef Kevin Atchley, owner of Portland’s very own Pine State Biscuits.

Monday December 29: Snowflakes to Spiced Cakes. Collaged snowflakes, nature- inspired art, and seed snowballs will transform the Farmhouse into a winter wonderland.

Tuesday, December 30: Cheese and Sausage Making

Wednesday, December 31:  Soaps and Salves

Forage for evergreen herbs and incorporate them into calming rosemary lavender pouches, make biodegradable glycerin soaps Zenger Farm is a working urban farm that models, promotes and educates about sustainable food systems, environmental stewardship, community development and access to good food for all. Founded in 1999,  it now consists of 9 acres of farmland and a 10-acre wetland in outer SE Portland.

Learn more at or call 503.282.4245. The farm is at 11741 SE Foster Rd.


Request for Proposals:

Division Design Guidelines


The Division Design Initiative (DDI) seeks experienced consultant(s) to assist the SE Division community in developing a design guidelines booklet for SE Division Street from SE 11th to SE 60th.  The DDI is a grassroots coalition of neighborhood and business groups. The Guidelines will provide the Division community and adjacent neighborhoods with design tools and resources to more effectively advocate for community priorities and preferences.

Applications due January 7, 2015.  For details go to:

or e-mail


Recycling Tip


By Bonita Davis

Certified Master Recycler

Sunnyside Neighbor


Baking season is here and it’s time to stock up on nuts, spices, and those special ingredients you will need. Buying bulk reduces packaging and can save you money.

Pecans and cinnamon sticks were recently compared in three local groceries. One store offered pecans for $7.99 lb. bulk and 13.98 lb. pre-packaged.  Cinnamon sticks at another store were 11.99 lb. bulk and 7.59 oz. pre-packaged. Not all items are offered at a savings, but it’s worth comparing.

Plastic bags are still provided as an option in grocery produce and bulk sections.  Consider an alternative, such as purchasing reuseable produce bags, using spice and jam jars, or reusing your small brown paper bags or clean deli and yogurt containers from home. Making your own small cloth bags can be a fun project.

Begin by asking about the bulk bin policy at your favorite store. I found a grocery that gives a 10 cent credit per container from home.

Tare weight is the weight of an empty container and it is separated from the cost of the product at the time of sale. It is important to ask the cashier to weigh and mark your empty containers before filling. Then, remember not only your bag, but a few containers.

A terrific resource book:  Plastic Free, How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too by Beth Terry.


ANNUAL ADVENT CRAFT FESTIVAL – Sunday December 7, 1 to 3 pm, Tabor Heights Methodist Church, 6161 SE Stark St. Make your own crafts, from swags to ornaments and more. For children and adults, all ages welcome with a chili lunch after the church service around 12:30, crafts and refreshments.  A real community event, and it’s free. Questions? or call 503.232.8500.


Hawthorne Gardens couple


a-haw-couplesDenis Reilly and Marguerite Kiernan met at an army base chapel at Fort Lewis, Washington. Denis, originally from Ireland, had volunteered for service and became an American citizen. Marguerite grew up in Bend and worked for the Army at Camp Abbott (now Sunriver). She transferred to Fort Lewis, and one of her first orders of business was to check on church services. She is the daughter of an Irish immigrant and was charmed by the young Irishman and the pictures of his large family. They married at the same chapel on December 15, 1944.

Their first child, Cecilia (Sally) was born in Olympia. They eventually settled in the Portland area and lived in the McLoughlin Heights housing projects. Kathy and Larry were born during that time.  They purchased a home in NE Portland, and Tom and Jim arrived to complete the family.  They were active at St. Charles Church and School and in Scouting and Little League. The couple remained in their house for 62 years. They moved to Hawthorne Gardens Senior Living in 2013, where they remain as devoted to one another as they were seventy years ago.


Write Around Portland 46th Book Release


Write Around Portland offers community-building writing workshops in hospitals, schools, homeless youth shelters, senior centers, low income housing buildings, prisons, treatment facilities and social service agencies. This year Write Around Portland celebrates its 15th anniversary.

The group is releasing its 46th book – Mile Marker – of community writing by adult and youth in the Fall 2014 writing workshop participants. The anthology includes introductions by Executive Director Robyn Steely and Powell’s Books CEO Miriam Sontz.

The public is invited to attend a reading of the writers’ work. The event is scheduled for Wednesday, December 10, 6:30 pm, Collins Hall at the back of the First United Methodist Church, 1838 SW Jefferson St. at the Goose Hollow TriMet MAX stop.

Admission to the reading is free, but donations of any amount are accepted to support the work of Write Around Portland. The event is ADA-accessible and books are available for purchase for $12. For more information about Write Around Portland, visit


Franklin High School redesign from Division St.

Franklin High School redesign from Division St.

Franklin High School is holding a Food Drive to donate non-perishable food items to local families in need. Donations accepted at FHS, SE Woodward St. and 55th Ave., Rain or shine, Por que no, Cheese bar, Burgerville and Cafe au play. The Food Drive will be held from December 1 through January 5. Your contributions would be most appreciated.


Demolition regulations adjustments


By Midge Pierce


A small but growing army of citizens are fighting the rash of demolitions throughout Portland. Barbara Strunk with the grassroots United Neighborhoods for Reform (UNR) is among those circulating a resolution for presentation to City Council on December 17.

Demolitions of good quality, single family houses are almost epidemic, Strunk says. A resident of Beaumont Wilshire, she has witnessed 80 demolitions in her neighborhood alone. “We’re wasting affordable houses. Most can be remodeled as good homes for first time buyers.”

Instead, she says, replacements are generally two to three times bigger and pricier than the original house that was demolished. Developers build houses that outprice the young families that are the fabric of affordable neighborhoods, she says. An additional concern is that when  older homes are demolished, nothing is done to contain lead and hazardous waste.

“We’re losing open space, setbacks, trees, solar access and gardens. This is not what a green city should be doing.”

At this writing, 20 neighborhood associations throughout the city have adopted the resolution including Hosford-Abernethy and Mt. Tabor on the eastside.

The Resolution includes the following adjustments to the city’s demolition regulations: restoration of the 35-day demolition delays for single-family structures; definition of demolition as removal of 50% or more of a structure;  requirements that demolition permits comply with all state and federal environmental and safety regulations including those for lead and asbestos; options for a 120-day delay available to neighborhood associations or coalitions; notice of proposed demolition provided to residents and property owners within a specified distance; establishment of a rigorous definition of deconstruction and recommendation of incentives for repurposing construction debris; revision of the code to limit the mass, footprint and height of construction; revision of current zoning and lot-splitting policies to protect existing housing; recommendations for tree and solar access protections; measures to protect Portland residents from lead, asbestos and other contaminants; updating to the Historic Resources Inventory; a user-friendly online system for tracking demolition

The UNR resolution complements a petition being circulated by volunteers of the grassroots Portland Coalition for Historic Resources. For more information on demolition and actions addressing short-term fixes that City Council can adopt this year see:


Locals Christmas book


a-book-webHave a merry Oregon Christmas, from the rain forest to the desert to the mountains to the beach. Cousins Liz and Danny are seeing it all. They’re camping near the Columbia River like Lewis and Clark, collecting “thunder eggs” and snowboarding near a volcano. With everything from busy beavers and howling wolves to tumbling waterfalls and food carts with yummy eats, Oregon is amazing!

Local author Susan Blackaby and local illustrator Carolyn Digby Conahan created The Twelve Days of Christmas in Oregon, a new, fun children’s book which is part of a national series. It’s a fine way to educate children to Oregon’s history, geography and landmarks.

Published by Sterling Children’s Books and available at Kids at Heart 3445 SE Hawthorne and Presents of Mind 3633 SE Hawthorne. Also at Barnes and Noble or online.


StudentBuilt App improves communications


Franklin High School is adopting a student- built app that improves communication between students, teachers and administrators  and helps students track assignments, announcements and school events.

A team of enterprising students has been working hard to bring their new app to Franklin High School and this semester, that goal is becoming a reality.

Teachers, administrators, club leaders and sports teams have signed on to use the FHS App to post important information about class assignments, school events and important notices.

“The app is a fantastic way for teachers to maximize their teaching time in class, because they don’t have to listen to the announcements,” explains Rob Jamieson, Mathematics teacher at FHS.

“It provides additional ways for students to take control of their own educational experience.”

The team has been training teachers to use the app and spreading excitement among the student body. The app is currently available in the iTunes App Store, on Google Play and on the web at

Students began working on the project in the summer of 2012. They chose to reinvent school announcements which were difficult to hear over the school’s loudspeaker system.

Starting with conversations and whiteboard sketches, they eventually moved into UI design, development, testing, promotion and product release. The app grew in scope to include announcements about class assignments, link to school resources, show a school calendar and gather feedback from users.

As part of their product release strategy, the team coordinated a series of school events throughout November that they dubbed “FHS App Month” to raise awareness about the app.

Events included coding challenges, a contest for suggesting new app features, rewards for app–related social media posts, and extra credit available only through the app.

The project is supported by the Technology Association of Oregon and has ties to the school’s year–old technology incubator, Innovation Academy.

Gage Choat, owner and web developer at Harmonic Northwest, serves as mentor for the project, meeting with the team once a week to guide the coding process.

The codebase is open-source and was used as the framework for a similar app developed by students at Wilson High School and used by local residents and the police department to communicate announcements related to community safety.

For more information about the Franklin High School app, visit



ADX PRESENTS: GIFTED 2014 A PORTLAND MADE MARKETPLACE, December 13 from noon to 9 pm, at 417 SE 11th Ave. Join Portland’s top local goods vendors for the 4th Annual Holiday Fair. Local vendors will help you get all your holiday shopping done in one place without breaking the bank. This year, all goods sold at Gifted are Portland Made. Support local makers while getting everything you need for the holidays. Enjoy good music and refreshments while you find the perfect local gifts for the people in your life. When you get tired of shopping, take a turn in our photo booth or enjoy delicious local cuisine. Contact: or see


The Montavilla Food Co-op is a not-for-profit, community-owned organization dedicated to opening a democratically-run, cooperative grocery in the Montavilla neighborhood. They’re working hard towards connecting the East Portland community to healthy food, supporting local farmers and producers, building community wealth and advancing sustainability initiatives all within a centrally-located, cooperative grocery. They are in the organizational, fundraising and member-equity development phase of building the co-op and they hope to open the door in the next 12-24 months. There are 307 members with the goal of 1,000. The next Outreach Committee meeting is Dec. 1, 7 pm at 1584 SE 85th.


Tree Lot Sale – Troop 351 Boy Scouts of America & Venture Crew 2014 are in the southwest corner of St. Ignatius parking lot at 3400 SE 43rd Ave. This will be troop 351’s, 34th year selling Christmas trees and wreaths. The non-profit sale funds the Boy Scouts and Venture Crew’s summer camps and activities for the entire year. The sale is run by the volunteer boys, girls and parents. The trees have been handpicked from local growers and they are once again offering a limited number of SERF-certified trees (grown on sustainable farms). Visa and Mastercard welcome. For more information call the Tree Lot Trailer phone number 503.775.2848.


NEW YEAR’S EVE BALL AT THE LAURELHURST CLUB. Welcome in 2015 at this beautiful, historic ballroom at 3721 SE Ankeny St. An elegant evening of dinner and dancing to the John Bennett Orchestra begins at 7:30 with social time and food. The band plays until 12:30 am. Black tie/dark suit for men and formal/party dress for women. Menu includes baked salmon with caper lemon sauce or crispy coconut-crusted chicken with mango chutney with sides and dessert. All food is local and organic. BYOB if desired and a midnight champagne toast is provided. $100 per couple, limited to 50 couples so make reservations now with Cynthia at 503.281.4127 or